|Cuban girl's guide to tea and tomorrow|
Author: Namey, Laura Taylor
Seventeen-year-old Lila Reyes, furious when her parents send her to the English countryside to recover from grief and heartbreak, unexpectedly falls in love with a teashop clerk--and England, itself.
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 09/01/2020 When seventeen-year old Lila falls apart following significant tragedies in her life, her family sends her on a little sabbatical away from Miami, to stay with a relative in Winchester, England for the summer. At first, it's the last thing Lila wants; after all, she and her sister are supposed to inherit the family bakery, and she loves nothing more than to make delicious food and feed people. Things in Winchester fall into place as she meets new friends and pours her heart into the kitchen at her family's inn. The heart-wrenching grief Lila feels for her recently deceased abuela and subsequent loss of two important relationships comes in waves throughout the story, striking suddenly then ebbing as Lila discovers new and healthy ways to cope. Anyone who has lost a loved one knows exactly how it feels, and Namey conveys it perfectly. This book has it all: the recipe for new, lasting, happy friendships, a dash of romance, and some gentle (albeit hard) lessons about honoring yourself and letting go of people as perspectives shift. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 10/01/2020 Gr 7 Up—Lila has led her life following every instruction, much like she does with her beloved family recipes. Nestled in Miami, Lila has been surrounded by her Cuban family and has her life planned out after high school—take over her abuela's bakery, move in with her best friend, and keep seeing her boyfriend Andrés. But even recipes that are tried and true can sometimes fall apart. Lila's best friend Stef wants to do missionary work in a rural village in Africa, Andrés breaks up with her, then the worst thing happens—her abuela passes away. Lila is left numb and, in an attempt to feel something, she goes for a run that lasts hours without telling anyone. Worried, her family makes the decision to send Lila to England to stay with family. There, Lila misses her Cuban family, sunny weather, and her old life. She is stuck in the past and can't seem to move on. New scenery helps Lila reflect on her life and bring into focus what she wants, which may not be what she thought it was. It also doesn't hurt that she meets a cute boy named Orion. Like so many children of immigrants, there is a sense that first-generation children should have careers thought out, and Lila is realizing that she has power over her life's direction. The teen's sweet love story and desire to find herself while trying to stay connected to her Cuban heritage is a relatable message. VERDICT Readers who have often wondered about stepping outside their comfort zone can find courage in Lila's story.—Katie Llera, Brunner Elem. Sch., Scotch Plains, NJ - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.